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Friday, February 23, 2018

#GIA Winter 2017 Gems & Gemology Explores Cullinan-Like Diamonds, Gem Carvers and Research Developments

Winter 2017 Gems & Gemology Explores Cullinan-Like Diamonds,
Gem Carvers and Research Developments
Includes a full-color wall chart of ruby inclusions

The Winter 2017 issue of Gems & Gemology (G&G), GIA’s (Gemological Institute of America’s) quarterly professional journal, explores the deep geologic origins of the world’s biggest and purest diamonds and what they tell us about the earth; the Dreher family of gem carvers of Idar-Oberstein; the first characterization of Australian Akoya cultured pearls; recent improvements in GIA’s reference standards for trace element analysis; and a comparison of two X-ray microradiography detectors. It also contains a wall chart of inclusions in natural, treated and synthetic ruby. The issue is available in print by subscription and in the GIA Store, and digitally – at no cost – on

G&G opens with “The Very Deep Origin of the World’s Biggest Diamonds.” GIA research scientist Dr. Evan Smith, Dr. Steven Shirey of the Carnegie Institution for Science and Dr. Wuyi Wang, GIA’s vice president of research and development, co-authored the cover article. Their work expands on research presented in the December 2016 issue of Science magazine, in which Dr. Smith and a team of researchers uncovered how Cullinan-like, nitrogen-poor “CLIPPIR” diamonds contain inclusions that offer insight into the nature and formation of the Earth’s mantle. The G&G article provides more detail on the key features of these diamonds as well as data on additional samples.

On the cover of the Winter 2017 issue of Gems & Gemology is the 812 ct Constellation diamond. Recovered from the Karowe mine in Botswana in November 2015. At the time of publication, it was the sixth-largest gem-quality rough diamond ever recorded. The size, near absence of inclusions, low nitrogen content, shape and surface texture place it in a special variety known as CLIPPIR diamonds, which are reviewed in the lead article in this issue. Photo by Jian Xin (Jae) Liao/GIA.

“Gem Virtuosos: The Drehers and Their Extraordinary Carvings” explores the work of a multigenerational family of gem carvers, the Drehers of Idar-Oberstein, Germany. Robert Weldon, Cathleen Jonathan and Rose Tozer of GIA’s Richard T. Liddicoat Library and Information Center focus on the contemporary craft of Gerd Dreher and his son, Patrick, who create elegant gem carvings from high-quality agate and other rough gem materials.

Research by Dr. Laura Otter and coauthors is presented in “Akoya Cultured Pearl Farming in Eastern Australia.” This is the first gemological characterization of Australian akoya cultured pearls using Raman, photoluminescence, FTIR and UV-Vis spectroscopy.

Additional articles cover new developments in industry techniques: Dr. Jennifer Stone-Sundberg’s “Accurate Reporting of Key Trace Elements in Ruby and Sapphire Using Matrix-Matched Standards” and Dr. Stefanos Karampelas’s “Real-Time Microradiography of Pearls: A Comparison Between Detectors.”

The Winter 2017 issue of G&G also features a wall chart on ruby inclusions, the third in a series of charts on gem inclusions. The same team of specialists that created G&G’s Winter 2016 emerald inclusion chart and the Summer 2017 sapphire inclusion chart, led by GIA’s Nathan Renfro and John Koivula, documents a range of internal features found in natural, treated and synthetic ruby. Laminated versions of all three charts may be purchased at the GIA Store.

This and every issue of G&G since 1934, including full articles, lab notes, photo galleries and exclusive video footage, are available at no cost on GIA’s website at

Additional research articles are available at

Print subscriptions and copies of back issues are available at, or by contacting G&G customer service at +1 760-603-4502.

About GIA
An independent nonprofit organization, GIA (Gemological Institute of America), established in 1931, is recognized as the world’s foremost authority in gemology. GIA invented the famous 4Cs of Color, Clarity, Cut and Carat Weight and, in 1953, created the International Diamond Grading System™ which is recognized around the world as the standard for diamond quality.

Through research, education, gemological laboratory services and instrument development, the Institute is dedicated to ensuring the public trust in gems and jewelry by upholding the highest standards of integrity, academics, science and professionalism. Visit

GIA Offers $2 Million in Scholarships in Spring Cycle #Scholarship #GIA

GIA Offers $2 Million in Scholarships in Spring Cycle
$500,000 bequest to fund Charles and Erna Leutwyler Memorial Scholarship

CARLSBAD, Calif. – Jan. 29, 2018 – GIA (Gemological Institute of America) will begin accepting applications for the Spring scholarship cycle; applications are due by March 31, 2018. Applications are available at for the Institute’s Gemology and Jewelry Manufacturing Arts programs, courses and lab classes. 2018 is the first year for the Charles and Erna Leutwyler Memorial Scholarship, funded by a bequest of nearly $500,000 to GIA from the estate of alumni couple, Charles and Erna Leutwyler.

Over the course of eight years GIA has awarded more than $8 million in scholarships to more than 1,500 students globally. GIA offers on-campus and distance education (eLearning and lab classes) scholarships that applicants can apply for every calendar year. GIA scholarships, which total $2 million for 2018, align with the Institute’s goal of providing quality education to aspiring and current gem and jewelry trade professionals.

The Charles and Erna Leutwyler Memorial Scholarship, offered for the first time in this scholarship cycle, provides $18,000 toward the completion of an on-campus Graduate Gemologist, Graduate Jeweler or Jewelry Design & Technology program in the U.S. The scholarship is named in honor of Charles and Erna Leutwyler, GIA alumni who owned and operated a jewelry business in Austin, Texas for more than 20 years. 

A profile of the Leutwylers and their dedication to learning and giving can be found on GIA’s website

“We are pleased that GIA can honor the Leutwylers, their dedication to learning and their spirit of giving through this memorial scholarship,” said Kathryn Kimmel, GIA senior vice president and chief marketing officer.

Charles and Erna Leutwyler, who were married for 50 years, owned the popular Charles Leutwyler Jewelers in Austin, Texas. Beginning in the March 2018 application period, a perpetual endowed scholarship in their name will be available each year.

GIA scholarships are funded by the GIA Endowment Fund and several private donors, and are available for distance education eLearning courses and for classes at the Institute’s campuses in Bangkok, Carlsbad, Hong Kong, London, Mumbai, New York and Taiwan; and at the education location in Dubai. For more information, call +1(760) 603-4131 or contact us at

About GIA
An independent nonprofit organization, GIA (Gemological Institute of America), established in 1931, is recognized as the world’s foremost authority in gemology. GIA invented the famous 4Cs of Color, Clarity, Cut and Carat Weight and, in 1953, created the International Diamond Grading System™ which is recognized around the world as the standard for diamond quality.

Through research, education, gemological laboratory services and instrument development, the Institute is dedicated to ensuring the public trust in gems and jewelry by upholding the highest standards of integrity, academics, science and professionalism. Visit

Saturday, January 6, 2018

CIBJO Releases Coral Commission's Special Report

from Press Release

CIBJO releases Coral Commission's Special Report, 
calls for campaign to differentiate between 
precious and non-precious coral 

With fewer than two weeks to go to the opening of the 2017 CIBJO Congress in Bangkok, Thailand, on November 5, 2017, the eighth and the final of the CIBJO commissions' Special Reports for this year has been released. Prepared by Vincenzo Liverino, President of the organization's Coral Commission, the report calls for an educational campaign to differentiate between precious coral varieties, which are harvested in a responsible and sustainable manner, and non-precious varieties, some of which are seeing their numbers dwindle as a result of climate change.
"One of the main concerns of the Coral Commission is to make sure that all precious coral in circulation in the marketplace has been harvested and handled in accordance with the applicable regulatory legislation associated with the protection of wildlife. This is being done for the sake of sustainability, a key doctrinal orientation of the UN charter," Mr. Liverino writes.
Precious corals, which are subject to national regulatory legislation, are harvested in strict observance of responsible practices, and should be perceived as sustainable and responsible products, Mr. Liverino notes. But this is not the way things are sometimes portrayed in the media. "There has been for many years a misunderstanding that precious coral species are the same as those endangered non-precious coral species. It must be stressed that, despite sharing a common name, threatened coral species are not used in the jewelry industry," he adds.
"An educational campaign must be undertaken, to properly explain to the environmentally conscious consumer that the corals that have been used as a biogenic gem material in jewellery for millennia are not the ones that studies have shown to be damaged by climate change, posing a serious challenge to the marine ecosystem in many parts of the planet. It must be underlined that we in the precious coral and jewelry sectors share common global environmental concerns with most of the scientific community," Mr. Liverino writes.
To download a full copy of the CIBJO Coral Commission's special report, PLEASE CLICK HERE.

About CIBJO:  CIBJO is the international jewelry confederation of national trade organizations. CIBJO's purpose is to encourage harmonization, promote international cooperation in the jewelry industry and to consider issues which concern the trade worldwide. CIBJO's chief mission is to protect consumer confidence in the industry. Click here to visit the CIBJO website for more information. 

Monday, December 11, 2017

Green #Diamonds: Natural Radiance at the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County

from a Calendar posting


Brilliance of the Gamma Collection

Green Diamonds: Natural Radiance
December 9, 2017 – April 1, 2018

Some of the world's rarest colorful diamonds are stopping in Los Angeles for a limited time. 

The Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County is hosting a special exhibition Green Diamonds: Natural Radiance, which will add eight cases of bright color and shine inside the Museum’s renowned Gem and Mineral Hall. The vibrant diamonds on display as loose gems and mounted jewelry are part of the Gamma Collection, which was amassed over the course of 20 years and is comprised of more than 60 of the rarest and most prestigious natural colored diamonds in the world. 

NHMLA’s Gem and Mineral Vault welcomes a wide variety of alluring diamonds showcasing natural green radiance. The science behind these diamonds is as mesmerizing as they are!

At the center of Natural Radiance at NHMLA will be “The Mantis”, the largest Vivid Yellowish Green diamond ever graded by the Gemological Institute of America, alongside “The Shangri-La”, the finest example of a large vivid green diamond, both of which are mounted in rings. 

Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County, 900 Exposition Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90007. 

On View December 9, 2017 through April 1, 2018. 

Green Diamonds: Natural Radiance will be complemented by seasonal offerings in the Museum’s Gem Store and an array of public programs, including “All that Glitters,” an all-day winter celebration of Green Diamonds that includes live cabbing demonstrations, tours of the NHMLA Gem Vault, and hands-on activities for all ages.

Where Diamonds Come From

For additional details visit

Saturday, December 9, 2017

Pantone Unveils Color of the Year 2018: PANTONE® 18-3838 Ultra Violet

from Press Release

Pantone Unveils Color of the Year 2018: 

PANTONE® 18-3838 Ultra Violet

Inventive and imaginative Ultra Violet lights the way to what is yet to come

Pantone, a wholly owned subsidiary of 
X-Rite, Incorporated, and provider of professional color language standards and digital solutions, today announced PANTONE 18-3838, UltraViolet, as the Pantone Color of the Year for 2018. A dramatically provocative and thoughtful purple shade, PANTONE 18-3838 Ultra Violet communicates originality, ingenuity, and visionary thinking that points us towards the future.

“We are living in a time that requires inventiveness and imagination. It is this kind of creative inspiration that is indigenous to PANTONE 18-3838 UltraViolet, a blue-based purple that takes our awareness and potential to a higher level,” said Leatrice Eiseman, Executive Director of the Pantone Color Institute. “From exploring new technologies and the greater galaxy to artistic expression and spiritual reflection, intuitive UltraViolet lights the way to what is yet to come.” Complex and contemplative, UltraViolet suggests the mysteries of the cosmos, the intrigue of what lies ahead, and the discoveries beyond where we are now. The vast and limitless night sky is symbolic of what is possible and continues to inspire the desire to pursue a world beyond our own.

Enigmatic purples have also long been symbolic of counterculture, unconventionality, and artistic brilliance. Musical icons Prince, David Bowie, and Jimi Hendrix brought shades of UltraViolet to the forefront of western pop culture as personal expressions of individuality. Nuanced and full of emotion, the depth of PANTONE 18-3838 UltraViolet symbolizes experimentation and non-conformity, spurring individuals to imagine their unique mark on the world, and push boundaries through creative outlets.

Historically, there has been a mystical or spiritual quality attached to UltraViolet. The color is often associated with mindfulness practices, which offer a higher ground to those seeking refuge from today’s over-stimulated world. The use of purple-toned lighting in meditation spaces and other gathering places energizes the communities that gather there and inspire connection.

“The Pantone Color of the Year has come to mean so much more than ‘what’s trending’ in the world of design; it’s truly a reflection of what’s needed in our world today,” added Laurie Pressman, Vice President of the Pantone Color Institute. “As individuals around the world become more fascinated with color and realize its ability to convey deep messages and meanings, designers and brands should feel empowered to use color to inspire and influence. The Color of the Year is one moment in time that provides strategic direction for the world of trend and design, reflecting the Pantone Color Institute’s year-round work doing the same for designers and brands.”

UltraViolet in Fashion
On the runway or the streets, UltraViolet is an enchanting purple that provides a theatrical linkage for both men’s and women’s styles. True to the coupled nature of UltraViolet, created by combining red and blue, UltraViolet lends itself to unique color combinations in fashion and is easier to pair with all colors on the spectrum than one might think. With golds or other metallics, Ultra Violet becomes luxurious and dazzling; with greens or greys, it evokes natural elegance. Similarly, Ultra Violet takes on distinct appearances with different materials. Lush velvets in the color suggest intrigue for evening, but are also unexpectedly modern in athleisure or sneakers. In accessories, jewelry, and eyewear, UltraViolet suggests the complexities of natural gems, textures, and florals.

About the Pantone Color of the YearThe Color of the Year selection process requires thoughtful consideration and trend analysis. To arrive at the selection each year, Pantone’s color experts at the Pantone Color Institute comb the world looking for new color influences. This can include the entertainment industry and films in production, traveling art collections and new artists, fashion, all areas of design, popular travel destinations, as well as new lifestyles, playstyles, and socio-economic conditions. Influences may also stem from new technologies, materials, textures, and effects that impact color, relevant social media platforms and even up-coming sporting events that capture worldwide attention. For 19 years, Pantone’s Color of the Year has influenced product development and purchasing decisions in multiple industries, including fashion, home furnishings, and industrial design, as well as product packaging and graphic design.

Friday, December 8, 2017

American Gem Trade Association GemFair™ and U.S. Antique Shows to Co-Locate in Las Vegas

from a Press Release
American Gem Trade Association GemFair™ 
and U.S. Antique Shows to Co-Locate in Las Vegas
Partnership will Mutually Benefit Exhibitors and Attendees

The American Gem Trade Association (AGTA) and U.S. Antique Shows are pleased to announce that their Las Vegas events will be co-located at the Las Vegas Convention Center, beginning in June of 2019. AGTA GemFair™ Las Vegas is a destination event that is integral to the vitality of businesses for thousands of retailers, brands, manufacturers, and designers, while for over two decades, the Las Vegas Antique Jewelry and Watch Show has been the largest trade-only event serving the antique and estate jewelry and watch industry. The co-location of these two indispensable industry events will serve to augment and enhance their respective markets through increased access to global buyers, and compellingly cohesive exhibitions.  
“We carefully researched all facets of this partnership prior to making the decision to align with U.S. Antique Shows at the Las Vegas Convention Center,” explains Douglas K. Hucker, CEO of the AGTA. “Through on-going conversations with our members, as well as multiple discussions within the board and in committees, we came to the conclusion that it’s time for an evolution for AGTA GemFair™ Las Vegas. The collaboration with Emerald Expositions was a logical choice; not only is the move mutually beneficial to both our exhibitors and attendees, but there is also a commonality in the perspectives and goals of each of our organizations.” 
“We are thrilled to join forces with the AGTA during Las Vegas Market Week,” said Gannon Brousseau, Senior Vice President of Emerald Expositions' Jewelry Group. “As a group, we carefully weigh all decisions that potentially affect the industry as a whole. We firmly believe that AGTA’s vendors and buyers are crucial to the success of our industry, and our Las Vegas Antique Jewelry and Watch Show vendors cater to a unique and varied group of qualified buyers. There is tremendous cross-promotional appeal between these two autonomous yet complementary events, and this partnership will ultimately contribute to the prosperity of the entire trade.” 

“There are paradigm changes going on in the industry. We see an exciting future for our exhibitors and buyers; the synergy of AGTA GemFair™ Las Vegas and the Las Vegas Antique Jewelry and Watch Show is incredible. We will have a show that is easy to work, and one where a store owner can find profits at every booth,” enthused Jeffrey Bilgore, President of the AGTA Board of Directors. “Establishing our independence in Las Vegas provides us with so many opportunities for growth and improvement, and partnering with a like-minded organization like Emerald Expositions allows us to provide a vital and affordable show experience for our members, and to expand our resources in strategic and consequential ways.” 

About American Gem Trade Association:
American Gem Trade Association is a not-for-profit Association serving the natural colored gemstone and cultured pearl industry since 1981. The AGTA serves the industry as “The Authority in Color” and has its headquarter office in Dallas, TX.

About U.S. Antique Shows:
U.S. Antique Shows, producer of the industry’s most anticipated events, serves the unique needs of the antique and antique jewelry marketplace with shows in Las Vegas, Miami and New York. The group’s events offer a broad range of antiques as well as vintage and estate jewelry and watches, and annually draws more than 50,000 consumers and 3,000 dealers from 28 countries worldwide.
U.S. Antique Shows are owned by Emerald Expositions, the largest operator of business-to-business trade shows in the United States, with its oldest show dating back over 110 years. The company operates more than 50 trade shows, including 31 of the top 250 trade shows in the country as ranked by TSNN, as well as numerous other events. Emerald Expositions’ events connect over 500,000 global attendees and exhibitors and occupy over 6.5 million NSF of exhibition space. The company has been recognized with many awards and accolades that reflect industry leadership as well as the importance of its shows to the exhibitors and attendees they serve.

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

2018 Chinese Five Element Astrology - Year of the Brown Dog

2018 Chinese Five Element Astrology 

Year of the Brown Dog

The 2018 Chinese New Year Day is on Friday, February 16, 2018, in China's time zone. This day is the new moon day of the first Chinese lunar month in the Chinese Lunar Calendar system. The exact new moon time is at 05:06 on 16-Feb-18 in China's time zone.

Chinese calendar combines solar, lunar and 60 Stem-Branch counting systems. The 60 Stem-Branch calendar uses the names of Yin-Yang Five Elements (Metal, Water, Wood, Fire, and Earth) and 12 animals to rank the sequences. Five elements are connected to five colors - White, Black, Green, Red, and Brown. So Chinese use the color animal name to count the year. The name of 2018 is the Yang Male Earth Dog. Brown is connected to Earth. Therefore, 2018 is also called Brown Earth Dog Year.

The first day of the Brown Dog is not the Chinese New Year in Chinese Astrology. The first day of the Tigermonth is the first day of the Chinese Astrology year. This day is called Start of Spring, which is the date when the sun enters the 315th degree on the tropical zodiac. This day is around February 4, each year. 2018 Chinese Brown Dog starts on February 4, 2018, in China's time zone. That means Chinese Lunar New Year is not the first day of Brown Dog Year. If a baby is born February 5, 2018, then baby's zodiac sign is the Dog, not Chicken.

Sharing some really fun Jewelry and Gem Carvings honoring the DOG:

Alex Woo

Dog Fever

...and this is one of my favorites, a memorial necklace from Ivy by Design


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